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Perth CBD Western Australia

Perth Estate Planning Lawyers

Young family with 2 children in need of estate planning

Protect Your Family

Give your family members peace of mind in a time of great loss.

Luxurious home - protected for the next generation through estate planning

Protect Your Assets

​Protect your accumulated wealth from divorce, disputes, bankruptcy and spendthrift beneficiaries.

A female using a calculator to minimise estate tax

Minimise Tax

Protect the inheritance from unnecessary taxes.

Fixed Fees

Our fees are fixed regardless of the complexity of your matter. We offer a fresh alternative to the standard billable hour arrangement of most other law firms. Nobody likes surprises on their bills. Our fixed fees offer budget certainty, increased efficiency and transparency. You won’t have to pay for our work if we didn’t tell you our costs before we did the work.

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What our clients are saying

I would highly recommend Val . He has a very Professional approach to his work and great attention to detail. 

Frank Amara

Google reviews for Crystal Lawyers

Val was very patient and did not try to rush us. A very smooth transaction and could not recommend Val and his services any more.

Frank Britton

If it weren't for your analytical skill and knowledge, the matter wouldn't have been settle by now. 

Margot Kory

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Smart Wills Guide

Our wills guide illustrates how upgrading to a smarter will can add tens of thousands of dollars to the value of your estate.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a will?

An essential will is a legally binding document in which you specify what happens to your assets – including property, money, jewellery and sentimental items – after you die. In your will you dispose of all your earthly belongings and assets to your beneficiaries. You can leave instructions in your essential will for the person who will be in charge of managing your estate - your executor. In your will you can appoint a guardian for your minor children, leave instructions about your funeral, make donation of cash or items to organisations such as charities.

Why do I need a will?

You should make a will as it is the only way you can have a say in what happens to your assets. If you die without a valid will your assets will be distributed under the rules of intestacy in the WA Government will. The legal procedures involved to distribute your assets under the rules of intestacy are complicated and may cause delays, unnecessary expenses, worry and hardship to your family. If you have no will the court will must appoint an administrator to take care of your estate. Your estate may be administered by a person or persons that you may not have chosen. Your assets may not be distributed as you would have liked. Your children may be placed with guardians appointed by the court. Under the intestacy rules your spouse, step-children and friends may be overlooked. A person is more likely to make a claim and start a court fight because they may feel they have not received sufficient provision from the estate of the deceased.

What is the difference between a Power of Attorney (POA) and an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA)?

The main difference between a Power of Attorney and an Enduring Power of Attorney is that the enduring power continues to operate (it endures) after the donor loses legal capacity. Under s 105 Guardianship and Administration Act 1990 the enduring power will not be affected by the subsequent legal incapacity of the donors 105. A power of attorney only operates while the person who made it has legal capacity. The enduring power must state that it will either:

  • continue in force notwithstanding the donor's subsequent legal incapacity
  • or to be in force only during a period when a declaration by The State Administrative Tribunal under s 106 of the Guardianship and Administration Act 1990 is in force that the donor does not have legal capacity.
An enduring power of attorney cannot be made by another person on behalf of the donor whose capacity might be in doubt due to mental illness, acquired brain injury, cognitive impairment or dementia.

Can I leave my estate to a charity in my will?

Yes, it is possible to give your estate to a charity in your will. Leaving your estate to a charity is a commendable act and to ensure that your gift does not fail you should know that: There are certain categories of eligible persons who can make a family provision claim if you have failed to provide adequately for them in your will. Eligible persons in Western Australia are your:

  • spouse or de facto partner
  • former spouse or de facto partner if they were entitled to receive maintenance from you at the time of your death
  • children regardless of their age
  • grandchildren if they meet certain criteria
  • step children if they meet certain criteria
  • parents if they meet certain criteria
Do some homework about your chosen charity.
  • What is the precise name and address of the charity – ask for the ABN
  • Is your intended beneficiary really a charity
  • Will the charity accept the gifts that you wish to make, or has the charity a preferred form of bequest.
Consider giving your executor the power to select another charity which will fulfil the charitable purpose of the original charity because your chosen charity may have stopped to exist or may refuse your gifts.

What are the formal requirements for a valid will?

Under section 8 of the Wills Act 1970 (WA) a will is not valid unless:

  • it is in writing
  • it is signed by the testator or signed in the testator’s name by some other person in the testator’s presence and by the testator’s direction
  • the testator makes or acknowledges the signature in the presence of at least 2 witnesses present at the same time and
  • the witnesses attest and subscribe the will in the presence of the testator.
The testator must be in the same room with both witnesses, all being present together throughout the signing process. Only one pen should be used and that pen should be blue. The testator must date the will with the date when it was signed. All pages must be paginated and in the correct order. The testator must state in front of both witnesses they:
  • have read the will
  • know and approve its contents and
  • intend the document to be their will.
If there is more than one page the testator and the witnesses must sign all pages. Many things can go wrong when preparing a will. For a peace of mind call us on 0421 145 637 to make sure your will has been prepared and signed correctly.

What will happen with my estate if I die without a will?

In Western Australia the property of a person who dies intestate is distributed according to a legislated will found in the Administration Act 1903 (WA). The property will pass to the Crown if a person dies intestate leaving no husband or wife and no issue, parent, brother, sister, child of a brother or sister, grandparent, uncle, aunt or child of an uncle or aunt.

Should I prepare two wills if I have assets in Australia and England?

Yes, you should. Advantages:

  • enables the administration of the estate to proceed more rapidly.
  • not necessary to wait for the grant of probate to be made in Western Australia before resealing the grant in England.
  • if some beneficiaries resided in England and some in Australia. then assets in England could be left to the English beneficiaries and those in Australia to the Australian beneficiaries
  • the cost of transferring funds from one country to another together with the risk of foreign exchange losses would be avoided.

Estate Planning Services

Essential Wills

A will is a legal document that sets out the will maker’s wishes for the distribution of their assets after death. Essential wills do not provide asset protection and tax minimisation.

Complex Wills

A testamentary trust will protects your accumulated wealth from spendthrift beneficiaries, minimises tax to beneficiaries and helps protect the inheritance.

Enduring Power of Attorney

EPA is a legal agreement made by choice which enables a person to appoint trusted persons as their attorneys and gives power to attorneys to make financial and property decisions.

Enduring Power of Guardianship

EPG is a legal agreement made by choice which enables a person to appoint trusted persons as their guardians and gives power to the guardians to make personal, lifestyle and medical treatment decisions.

Advance Health Directive

An Advance Health Directive enables you to make decisions about the treatment you would want or not want to receive if you ever became sick or injured and were incapable of communicating your wishes. 

Super Binding Nomination

This is a written legally binding direction to your superannuation trustee setting out how to distribute your superannuation death benefits after your demise.

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